Okja 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 262, July/August

WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
The Criterion Collection
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Not Rated
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-100)
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Bong Joon Ho
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Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
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In "Okja," a South Korean girl named Mija (An Seo Hyun) is growing up on an Edenic mountainside with her grandfather and best friend Okja, a giant, empathetic "superpig" created as part of a secret GMO experiment. When Okja is abruptly torn away from her, Mija embarks on a perilous rescue mission that places her at the center of a sinister corporate conspiracy. (Gary Reber)

Special features include a new conversation between Director Bong Joon Ho and Producer Dooho Choi (HD 33:32), new interviews with actors An Seo Hyun (10:54) and Byun Heebong (HD 18:10)), new interviews with members of the crew about the film's cinematography (HD 09:06), visual effects (HD 16:05), and costume and production design HD 19:56), Netflix featurettes including Director's video diary (HD 01:52), teaser, trailer and Web pictures plus an essay by critic Karen Han.

The 2.39:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10/Dolby Vision picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed digitally in anamorphic Panavision® using the Arri Alexa 65 | Arri Alexa Mini | Arri Alexa XT Plus camera systems and sourced from a 4K master Digital Intermediate format. The picture is gorgeous with a purely natural color palette with rich and warm hues. The earthy tones are beautiful with vivid greens and browns exhibited in the forested mountaintop. The mountaintop environment and the New York City settings are so extremely different and captured perfectly. Nuanced hue shadings are exhibited throughout. HDR contrast is superb with natural black levels, revealing shadow delineation and natural white levels. Resolution is superb with fine detail exhibited throughout, Facial features reveal fine detail in skin pores, lines, beard stubble and hair, as well as the textural aspects of Okja's body features. Clothing is nicely detail. Object textures are sharp and clear throughout. This is a gorgeous picture with perfectly rendered colors and sharp and clear imagery. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack is naturally dynamic with no exaggerated deep bass or other unnatural sounds. Atmospherics are incredibly natural sounding. Of course, Okja's movement sounds are perfectly realistic with deep bass used to enhance her weighty footsteps. The orchestral/choral music is nicely recorded with a wide and deep soundstage that extends to the surrounds and envelops the soundfield. Dialogue in both Korean (with subtitles) and English is natural sounding with at times good spatial integration but also wanting.

The Immersive Sound element is impressive with an extension of the music, all manner of nature's and big city atmospherics, Nancy's dialogue entrance down a staircase, breaking glass door, alarm sounds, roadway tunnel sounds, voices, Okja's grunts and footsteps, shopping mall mayhem, Okja's pooping and farting, moving truck, crowd noise, airplane interior din, voice in room with Okja, parade staging din and crowd noises and voices, pipes scattering on road, pig slaughter house and meat packing sounds and countless other sound effects. This is a terrific height layer experience that delivers an effective spatial dimensional dimension.

This is a wonderfully natural sounding holosonic® spherical surround soundtrack with excellent atmospheric and other sound element fidelity. (Gary Reber)